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Laurie Stephey

laurie cori
Laurie Stephey Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow


Laurie Stephey is a postdoc at NERSC in the NESAP for Data program. She is working with the DESI (Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument) project to help make their large-scale data processing run efficiently at NERSC. This can be especially challenging since much of the DESI code is written in Python, a very popular language that is friendly for developers but not traditionally used in HPC. She is employing strategies like overall code restructuring and Just-In-Time compilation using Numba to make the DESI simulation and spectral extraction tools run faster on CPUs. She is also working to adapt DESI's spectral extraction code to GPU architectures in anticipation of the upcoming NERSC Perlmutter system. 

Laurie earned her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2017 studying edge physics in the HSX and W7-X stellarators. In 2009, she earned her B.A. in Physics from Rollins College in Orlando, Florida. She has also worked on musical acoustics, thin-layer deposition, x-ray simulation, and memristor device research projects. 

Research Interests

Using Python in scientific computing, dark energy, deep learning, superconducting magnets, plasma physics and fusion


L. A. Stephey, R. C. Thomas, and S. J. Bailey. "Optimizing Python-Based Spectroscopic Data Processing on NERSC Supercomputers." Proceedings of the 18th Python in Science Conf. (Scipy). July 2019. 

L. Stephey, A. Bader, F. Effenberg, O. Schmitz, G. A. Wurden, D. T. Anderson, F. S. B. Anderson, C. Biedermann, A. Dinklage, Y. Feng, H. Frerichs, G. Fuchert, J. Geiger, J. Harris, R. Koenig, P. Kornejew, M. Krychowiak, J. D. Lore, E. A. Unterberg, I. Waters, and the W7-X Team. "Impact of magnetic islands in the plasma edge on particle fueling and exhaust in the HSX and W7-X stellarators." Physics of Plasmas, Volume 25, Issue 6 (2018).

C. Buelo, L. Stephey, F. S. B. Anderson, D. Eisert, and D. T. Anderson. "Development of a 3-D visible limiter imaging system for the HSX stellarator." Review of Sci. Instrum., Volume 88, Issue 12 (2017).

L. Stephey, G. A. Wurden, O. Schmitz, H. Frerichs, F. Eenberg, C. Biedermann, J. Harris, R Koenig, P. Kornejew, M. Krychowiak, E. A. Unterberg and the W7-X Team. "Spectroscopic imaging of limiter heat and particle fluxes and of the resulting impurity sources during Wendelstein 7-X startup plasmas." Review of Sci. Instrum 87, 11D606 (2016).

J. L. Tedesco, L. Stephey, M. Hernandez-More, C. A. Richter, and N. Gergel-Hackett. "Switching mechamisms in flexible solution-processed TiO2 memristors." J. Nanotechnology 23, 305206 (2012).

L. A. Stephey and T. R. Moore. "Experimental investigation of an American five-string banjo." J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 124, 3276 (2008).

For other publications please see Laurie's Google Scholar profile

Invited Presentations

L. Stephey, O. Schmitz, D. T. Anderson, F. S. B. Anderson, G. A. Wurden, F. Effenberg, H. Frerichs, A. Bader, R. Koenig, C. Biedermann, M. Krychowiak, P. Kornejew, J. Harris, E. Unterberg, and the W7-X Team. "Control of neutral particle fueling and exhaust by plasma edge topology optimization in Wendelstein 7-X and HSX." APS DPP 2016 Invited Talk Abstract JI3.00001.